Lailat al Qadr, You Say? I’m Not Feelin’ It….

Bismillahi Rahmani RahimSalaam Alaikum wa RahmatullahOkay, so tonight is the 27th of Ramadan.  We are instructed to look for Lailat al Qadr, the Night of Power, in the odd nights of the last ten days, with particular emphasis on the 27th.  My husband left for the masjid before iftaar, and I am here home with the kids.  Sigh.  The kids.  The one who came home crying from school because his brother got a bottle of soap bubbles to play with from the prize box in his class … [Read more...]

Ramadan So Far

Bismillahi Rahmani RahimSalaam Alaikum wa RahmatullahHow is my  Ramadan going so far?  Am I spending my days in constant remembrance of Allah?  Am I devoting more time to study and acts of 'ibaadah?  Am I feeling a huge spiritual uplift this time of year?  Well, for me it's both simple and complicated.  I do remember Allah all during the day, but that is a really everyday thing for me.  I think it's part of my anxiety / guilt complex, but I am always AWARE of … [Read more...]

Mervat woke up for suhoor….

As usual, I stumbled out of bed this morning at o-dark-thirty to make suhoor.  I repeated my morning ritual of opening the fridge and staring at the contents.  As before, nothing jumped out at me so I grabbed the eggs and bread.  In a burst of creativity, I decided on scrambled eggs today instead of fried, and toast on the side.  Oh, and I prepared a pizza bagel for my son, who had asked me the night before that if I could please make one for him that would be great, but if I … [Read more...]

Hitting the Suhoor Wall….

Bismillahi Rahmani RahimSalaam Alaikum wa Rahmatullah.Halfway through Ramadan.  The alarm clock went off on time.  Bleary-eyed, I stumble to the kitchen to make suhoor, the morning meal that is supposed to sustain us throughout the day of fasting.  I stand there in front of the refrigerator, staring at the contents, contemplating what to make.  I start rummaging through yogurt containers, none of which actually contain yogurt.  Hmm... cucumber salad, leftover pasta, … [Read more...]

Read to Feed – A Program for Masaajid

Bismillahi Rahmani Rahim Salaam Alaikum wa Rahmatullah Okay, so I was a good girl and got up promptly when the alarm went off this morning.  I made a nice suhoor (pre-fast meal) of eggs, turkey bacon, toast, and dates.  Yes, I buttered the toast, but no jam.  The baby woke up with us, which makes preparing food a challenge.  I can’t really trust my drowsy husband to keep track of him because, well, let’s just say Sherif is not terribly effective when he first wakes up (t … [Read more...]

Getting Off on the Right Foot: Creating a Successful… Whatever!

How-to books, videos, and seminars for budding entrepreneurs number in the thousands.  Successful business owners share tips over coffee and sales figures.  Hacks self-publish get rich quick schemes and late night infomercials tell you how to make millions selling on eBay or flipping properties.  What works, and what doesn't? What works is passion.  First and foremost, you have to love your idea.  You have to love it so much that you interrupt yourself in conversations … [Read more...]

Getting My Ramadan Mojo Back

Salaam Alaikum wa RahmatullahBismillahi Rahmani RahimOkay, I have a confession to make.  I rarely have a good Ramadan.  What is supposed to be a month of spirituality, sacrifice, contemplation, and joy has usually been for me well, kinda like every other month of the year.  My husband, bless his heart, is not an organizer and not the kind of person who himself will "upsell" the season or try to ramp us up.  I am the one who says "Let's get off caffeine and fast on Monday and … [Read more...]

The Apparent Injustice of this World

Rabbi Schmuley Boteach wrote an article that appeared on Huffingtonpost.com decrying the senseless brutal murder of a young boy on his way home from day camp.  This boy lived in the supposedly safe and insular Orthodox Jewish neighborhood of Borough Park in New York.  This boy, Leiby Kletzky, had only eight short blocks to navigate.  He became lost and stopped to ask a stranger for directions.  You might think, hmm, didn't his parents raise him better?  But this … [Read more...]

Inter-cultural Marriage – A Word to the Brothers

Bismillahi Rahmani RahimSalaam Alaikum wa RahmatullahMarriage is hard.  I don't care if you grew up on the same street, fell in love in grade school, have the exact same ethnic background, and have a million dollars and mansions in five countries.  Marriage is hard.  When you marry someone from another culture, marriage is harder.I've spoken about marriages between people of different faiths from time to time.  In general, though men are permitted to marry chaste women from … [Read more...]

I’m Going to Treat My Kids More Like Someone Else’s Kids

Bismillahi Rahmani RahimSalaam Alaikum wa RahmatullahI've been looking at myself lately and I don't much like what I see.  I've been short-tempered with my children.  More than short-tempered.  I've yelled at them and been harsh with them.  I could blame my cranky attitude on being sleep-deprived or on the fact that I have to tell them to do stuff ten times before they do it, but I can't put my bad behavior off on anyone.  I have to own it.  It's my fault.  … [Read more...]


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